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Political Risk, Financial Crisis, and Market Volatility

  • Jianping Mei

This paper examines the impact of political uncertainty on the recent financial crises in emerging markets. By examining political election cycles, we find that eight out of nine of the recent financial crises happened during periods of political election and transition. Using a combination of probit and switching regression analysis, we find that there is a significant relationship between political election and financial crisis after controlling for differences in economic and financial conditions. We observe increased market volatility during political election and transition periods. Moreover, we have some evidence that political risk is more important in explaining financial crisis than market contagion. Our results suggest that political uncertainty could be a major contributing factor to financial crisis. Thus, politics does matter in emerging markets. Since the odds of financial crisis tend to be much larger during the political election periods, institutional investors should take that into account when making emerging market investment during those time periods.

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Paper provided by New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business- in its series New York University, Leonard N. Stern School Finance Department Working Paper Seires with number 99-049.

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Date of creation: Aug 1999
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Handle: RePEc:fth:nystfi:99-049
Contact details of provider: Postal: U.S.A.; New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics . 44 West 4th Street. New York, New York 10012-1126
Phone: (212) 998-0100
Web page: http://w4.stern.nyu.edu/finance/

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  1. Banerjee, Abhijit V, 1992. "A Simple Model of Herd Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(3), pages 797-817, August.
  2. Alesina, Alberto & Cukierman, Alex, 1990. "The Politics of Ambiguity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(4), pages 829-50, November.
  3. G. William Schwert, 1990. "Stock Returns and Real Activity: A Century of Evidence," NBER Working Papers 3296, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Michael P. Dooley, 1998. "A model of crises in emerging markets," International Finance Discussion Papers 630, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. Bittlingmayer, George, 1992. " Stock Returns, Real Activity, and the Trust Question," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(5), pages 1701-30, December.
  6. Reinhart, Carmen & Kaminsky, Graciela, 1999. "The twin crises: The causes of banking and balance of payments problems," MPRA Paper 14081, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Avinash K. Dixit & Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 5474.
  8. David M. Cutler & James M. Poterba & Lawrence H. Summers, 1988. "What Moves Stock Prices?," NBER Working Papers 2538, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Kristen L. Willard & Timothy W. Guinnane & Harvey S. Rosen, 1995. "Turning Points in the Civil War: Views from the Greenback Market," NBER Working Papers 5381, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Bekaert, Geert & Harvey, Campbell R, 1995. " Time-Varying World Market Integration," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(2), pages 403-44, June.
  11. Eichengreen, Barry & Rose, Andrew K, 1998. "Staying Afloat When the Wind Shifts: External Factors and Emerging-Market Banking Crises," CEPR Discussion Papers 1828, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Krugman, Paul, 1979. "A Model of Balance-of-Payments Crises," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 11(3), pages 311-25, August.
  13. G. William Schwert, 1988. "Why Does Stock Market Volatility Change Over Time?," NBER Working Papers 2798, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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